6 Layout Types for Web Designs

July 7, 2018
July 7, 2018 Visual Development

6 Layout Types for Web Designs

I know what comes to your mind on the mention of web layout; fixed, elastic, and liquid measurements. These are traditional techniques of structuring words and images on a web page. The techniques are based on height and width measurement, which determine the level of flexibility and scalability. The layout of a web page has everything do with viewer experience and shifts of images and words on different screen sizes. For a long time, web designers have been rotating around the three techniques in a bid to improve viewer experiences. Changes in time come with different preferences and fashions that necessitate extra effort by designers to match the quality demand.

While times have changed, the old layout techniques are still implemented today. Here is a combination of the old, new, and future web layout types.

Absolute Layout

This type utilizes mm, cm, inches, and picas to position information on a web page. Absolute measurements are commonly used in print media that can integrate with print media and be compatible with PC software. Microsoft Word, for instance, uses the conventions in formatting and sizing documents. The software also helps in enhancing appearance of a printing paper. While it is mostly disregarded because of its limited use of printing papers, it is still relevant and used in various places around the world. It is not the most popular layout in web design but is still effective.

Absolute layout is the most suitable for printing web pages because it presents friendly style sheet and presents the data accurately.

Relative Layout

This is common for most web designers because of the flexibility. The structure and design of data and images on the web page is dependent on the size of the user’s screen and browser viewport. Users have the flexibility of adjusting the viewport, which changes the window size. The type of monitor also defines the viewport with respect to maximum sizes.

The layout in this case relies fully on the width. It does not matter whether it is a netbook or a wide desktop monitor; the viewport scales down according to the situation. While only few sites make use of the 100% width component, the layout is still relevant in the web design industry today.

Fixed Layout

Use of pixel-based measurement attributes to the effectiveness and reliability of this web design layout. There is no guessing on the structure of a web page because the measurements are exact. This unit of measurement ensures a designer has preview of how the web page will appear on different browsers and screen sizes. A fixed layout ensures full control and predictability of the web page design even before the website optimising phase.

We all have trouble with websites when scrolling from one side to the other; pixel measurements present a fixed layout that ensures visitors have a smooth maneuver around the website.

This type of layout is also suitable when using fixed layout rules like non-relative elements that include non-repeating background images. It is an all-round solution.

Elastic Layout

As the name suggests elastic layout flexes by growing and shrinking to meet the content’s needs, which uses relative EM unit of measurements. In web design, it is able to scale content and text sizes.

Elastic layout is best when flexible content like text blocks take the front seat unlike the fixed unit where absolute unit elements like images are best suited.

This is the most compliant layout types to your content because it gives itself a decision as to how the layout should scale.

If one wants the layout to be determined by the content elastic layout is the perfect solution. However, this can have issues if the text scales are beyond the viewport causing unwanted horizontal scrolling.

Scaled Layout

This is the latest method that manipulates viewpoints when the device is set in different orientations. The automatic transition in views when you change your mobile screen from portrait to landscape orientations is attributed to this layout. It alters the visual layout of a website irrespective of measurement units. Most people consider it a layout type of complex systems and wider screens, but it can be used for traditional web designs even on PC visual layouts.

The layout is suitable for mobile devices because of the small screens that cannot handle large pixels. Screen orientation and change in visual layouts did not exist till the discovery of scale layout. Measurement units are not an issue with this type, specific layout is the point of focus when designing a web page.

Liquid Layout

It is also called a fluid layout because of the flexibility in space. Web pages adapt to different sizes of devices. How a web page is viewed on a desktop screen is different from a mobile phone’s screen. The fact that liquid layout adjusts depending on space on devices makes it popular among users. Most web designers also implement the technique because it is 100% effective, with zero issues. It goes beyond the resolutions and pixels as measurement units to present quality visual layouts irrespective of the device space and screen size.

In addition, liquid layout adjusts according to width depending on the size of the viewport. The layout is applicable in any web environment, hence suitable for any business website.